In October 2015, Big Heritage worked in partnership with Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership Scheme to run a community excavation in the village of Formby. The landscape of Formby has been shaped by the sea over centuries, with numerous records of large-scale sand inundations followed by storms destroying metres of landscape overnight.
Formby as a place-name is Old Norse in origin, and comes from a period of Viking age settlement across Merseyside in the 10th century, but physical evidence of this activity is thin on the ground.
Over 60 volunteers from the local community took part in the excavation, which also included school workshops and outreach sessions in primary schools, osteoarchaeological master-classes and training in pottery identification and processing.
You can learn more about the community archaeology project by taking a look at the following video.
As a legacy, a core group of volunteers are now actively involved in monitoring the coastline of Sefton for potential archaeology revealed through storm damage. In partnership with CITiZAN, training has been provided to allow volunteers to identify, record and upload information to a national database.
The project also included a geophysical survey of the earliest lifeboat station in the world, out at Formby Point. Big Heritage were joined by Magnitude Surveys who undertook a magnetometery survey of the site and produced a report documenting the results.